We're providing updates as new information is available. The following is a message from Mayor Craig Brown regarding the current power and water situation:
"The City has spent the last week in constant conversations with Centerpoint, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas ( ERCOT ) in trying to request alternate methods of power interruption to no avail.
The management policies of these entities and their responsibility in disrupting service to 90 percent of our community for extended periods of time is a topic for another time. What I would like to do is update you on the current status and ramifications of this weather event.
Power Outages: As the freezing temperatures descended on our City decisions were made by ERCOT and Centerpoint to turn off power to the majority of the Island’s businesses and residences. The interruption of power to the vast majority of the Island was done with the intent of preserving electricity for the entire power grid of Texas. Instead of initiating rolling blackouts, a total discontinuance of power was initiated which left each one of us, especially the most vulnerable, in harm's way. The City worked to support the non-profits on the Island and opened a warming center at McGuire Dent Recreation Center with emergency generators. A letter to Governor Abbott from the City was presented to him yesterday morning seeking immediate assistance in bringing power back to the Island along with other requests.
Currently: Centerpoint has started yesterday afternoon to bring power back to homes and businesses in the same order as they were turned off. ERCOT has been giving and taking away power allocations to Centerpoint to maintain a balance of power around the State. Because of this, it is hard to predict when power will be restored to specific locations. Once you do receive power you may be subject to rolling blackouts which may continue into next week.
Water Concerns: Since the power was off for such an extended time, temperatures inside of homes reached levels that were sub-freezing. This has produced an unprecedented amount of frozen water pipes. Now that power is slowly coming back on and temperatures are rising we are experiencing a massive amount of water damage to homes and businesses.
Currently: The constant drain on our system from broken pipes an emergency water problem has developed which has prompted water conservation measures and a boil water policy. The best thing you can do to correct this problem is to turn the water off to your home or business, if you have water line breaks. If you cannot turn your water off please call 409-797-3631 or 409-797-3632 and the City Public Works Department will come out and turn the water off for you.
Bottom Line: Through the weekend expect intermittent periods of electricity and dependent on where you live, water may be a concern for the next couple of days. The City is working diligently to fill our water tanks as quickly as we can get water from GCWA and we can shut off water to those homes and businesses that have broken water lines.
Please Stay Safe and Warm and we will get through this."